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Litter Box Training For Cats and Kittens

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Kitty Litter

The choice of litter is very important to your cat. The ideal litter is as dust-free as possible, unscented, absorbent, and easy to dispose of. Dust can be a serious problem for cats because they are digging in the litter and can inhale dust, leading to respiratory problems. This is especially problematic in enclosed litter boxes-which many cats don’t like, either.

While scenting the litter makes the humans feel good, the smell may be overpowering to the cat, who will choose to retain urine or eliminate elsewhere.

Clumping litter is often preferable because it is easier to remove all solid and liquid waste from the box daily. Discussions have been held about the dangers of cats licking granules of clumping litter off their feet, but no case of a cat being harmed as the result of ingesting clumping litter has ever been verified. (Dogs who like to raid the litter box and ingest fairly large amounts of litter may suffer from dehydration.)

There are also diagnostic litters. These include Scientific Professional Cat Litter, which changes color with changes in urine pH, and Purina Glucotest Urinary Detection System, which uses an additive to indicate urine glucose levels to help monitor diabetic cats. Hemalert, also made by Purina, detects blood in the urine-a possible sign of FLUTD.

It is important to place litter boxes in relatively quiet areas that are easily accessible to the cat. Litter should be scooped at least once every day and the boxes thoroughly cleaned weekly. Ideally, you should have one litter box per cat in the household, plus a spare. They should not all be in the same room.

WebMD Veterinary Reference from "Cat Owner's Home Veterinary Handbook"

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